tv CNN Newsroom CNN February 6, 2013 2:00pm-4:00pm EST
that is how fast daredevil felix baumgartner fell when he jumped from space. that was back in october. now, the official speed has just been released. even faster than the record keepers thought at first. that does it for me. brooke baldwin takes it from here. "cnn newsroom" continues. it is the end of an era for the post office, but we're asking should one of america's worst run companies be privatized? i'm brooke baldwin. the news is now. so at this point who hasn't testified about guns? >> when your dad says something, you listen. >> celebs on the hot seat. plus, chilling new details about the bunker built for war. and who is joe arpaio enlisting to train posses of school guards? yep, steven segal.
hi there. i'm brooke baldwin. top of the hour here, perhaps it means something that hollywood stars and other celebrities are now jumping on the gun control bandwagon. take a look with me. recognize some of these faces? this was the scene just a short time ago on capitol hill. a celebrity backed group. they have a name for themselves, they call themselves demand a plan. they took center stage in washington today. basically their message to congress is this, act now, do something to reduce gun violence. here's tony bennett. >> i still haven't gotten over connectic connecticut. i'd like the assault weapons to go to war, not in our own country. and i'd like assault weapons eliminated. >> joe johns with me now from capitol hill. joe johns, our crime and justice
correspondent. joe, what does it say about the current state of the gun debate post sandy hook that celebrities are now starting to jump on board? >> reporter: pretty interesting. all-star cast. but not for hollywood movies. chris rock, tony bennett, amanda peet, all at the capital, all at a news conference, headed up by the group started by new york mayor michael bloomberg known as mayors against illegal guns. now, the overall tone was certainly serious, but chris rock was sort of able to loosen up the mood when he took the mike. listen. >> i am just here to support the president of the united states. president of the united states is, you know, our boss. he's also, you know, the president and the first lady are kind of like the mom and the dad of the country. when your dad says something, you listen. and when you don't, it usually bites you in the ass later on.
so i'm here to support the president. thank you. >> reporter: so the point, of course, is to use the star power of these artists to try to put pressure on congress to pass new gun laws. at the same time increasing the visibility of the organization mayors against illegal guns. they're pushing for improving background checks on gun purchases, passing the recent proposal to make gun trafficking a crime. also promoting proposals to get high capacity magazines off the streets, banning certain automatic -- semi-automatic fire arms, so-called assault weapons. also, actress amanda peet brought up the issue of further mental health screening for people trying to buy guns. listen. >> doing nothing will fail. doing nothing has failed. to people who question the potential effectiveness and/or practicality of these measures, to the people who say it would have happened anyway or we won't catch everybody, i say doing
nothing has failed. >> reporter: i talked to mark glades, the director of mayors against illegal guns, he was at the news conference. he said they want to show there is a broad coalition that cuts across all demographics, wasn't just movie stars at this news conference, by the way. they had children's trauma surgeon and episcopal priest, and the daughter of robert kennedy and the son of martin luther king, both of whom assassinated with guns, brooke. >> we will see if any of this star power on capitol hill moves this issue any farther forward. joe johns, thank you. a heads up, be sure to tune in, tony ben nett will join wol blitzer in "the situation room" here at 4:00 p.m. you will not be getting mail on saturdays much longer. the postal service is eliminating saturday deliveries starting in august. it says stamped letters, bills, are becoming passe. >> if we had the same volume of mail we had many years ago
before people paid bills online, we wouldn't be worried about this. people pay their bills online. it is simple. it is easy, it is free. you cannot be free. >> here is what is not changing. packages will be delivered to your home on sundays. your post office hours are not being cut. and if you have p.o. boxes, mail will still be delivered to those p.o. boxes on saturdays. let's talk more about this. athena jones joins me from washington. and, athena, the post office, they're making this decision without congress and the approval there. is it legal? >> that's the big question we're all asking during the press conference and afterwards. the postal service says they believe the language and the current budget bill gives them the room to do this. of course, that's a matter of some debate. it raises questions like if you could do this before, why didn't you do it before if you're in such dire financial straits, especially since the savings wouldn't come until august. this seems to be a way to try to put pressure on congress to make some big changes to the limits and the requirements they put on
the postal service. chief among them, 2006 bill that requires them to prefund health care benefits for future retirees to the tune of billions of dollars a year. they say this has put a lot of pressure on the postal service's bottom line that in addition to people using the internet to stay in touch and pay their bills. >> on the bottom line point, we know that ending saturday deliveries is supposed to save them something like 2 billion bucks. when you look big picture, this comes after that record loss of nearly $16 billion. that was last year. so does this really help in terms of the overall hemorrhaging of money from the post office? >> it is only 10% of the $20 billion short fall they expect to have later on. and so they seem to recognize that, they were asked a bit about that. and they said they're going to need congress' approval to do bigger things, to make changes, like i said to the 2006 law. they already made several attempts to cut costs. they have reduced hours at post offices over the past couple of years. they have closed some post offices. they raised stamp prices for
first class stamps a week ago, that went into effect. they have consolidated distribution centers. they have done a lot of things around the edges. >> i have to cut you off, forgive me, we got to go straight to the president as he's selecting his -- who he would like to have head the department of interior. here she is, to his right if you're looking at him from our perspective, here is sally jewell. >> -- department of america. other members of my cabinet may not entirely agree with that statement, but you can see where he's coming from. secretary of the interior is in charge of overseeing 500 million acres of public land including places like yellowstone and the grand canyon. and protecting our natural heritage for our children and our grandchildren and their children to come. but the job also requires keeping an eye on america's future, and making smart decisions about how we create jobs and help businesses grow and put ourselves on a path
towards energy independence. and that's not always an easy balancing act. but with enthusiasm and skill and dedication, that's exactly what ken salazar's done over the last four years. we were just reminiscing a little bit. i've known ken since we were both running for the senate together. and became the only two incoming democrats in our senate class, people ras remembers this, it was a lonely time. we actually lived in the same building when we first arrived in washington, and ken, you'll recall, it was a little discouraging because basically everybody else who lived there was 20 or 25. so we were the two geriatrics in this building. but i came to appreciate quickly not just his friendship, which
if you have ken salazar as a friend, you've got a real friend. not only did i come to appreciate his jump shot, he is surprisingly quick on the court, but also his patriotism and his belief that we have got a responsibility to care for the land with which we have been blessed. and it is not surprising that ken feels this way, after all, his ancestors were living here before the mayflower set sail. as he explains it, and relevant as we are working to get immigration reform passed, his family did not cross the border, the border crossed them. and that's why i needed somebody to lead interior, i didn't have to look very far. since being confirmed, ken has cracked down on waste, improved management of the department to make it work better for the american people, he's ushered in a new era of conservation for our land, our water and our wildlife. he's established seven new
national parks, ten new national wildlife refuges, he's opened more public land and water for safe and responsible energy production. not just gas and oil, but wind and solar. creating thousands of new jobs and nearly doubling our use of renewable energy in this country. he's helped to forge what is probably the strongest working relationship with tribal leaders that the federal government has seen in modern times. and when the unexpected has happened, like the gulf oil spill, or hurricane sandy, he's been on the ground making sure that people get help right away and we deal with these challenges as professionally as possible. so i really like ken salazar if you haven't gotten the point. ken is now ready to head back to colorado, and spend more time with hope and his family.
and so in addition to just saying thank you, ken, for the extraordinary work that you've done, ken has also going to have the opportunity to introduce his successor. and i am extraordinarily proud today to nominate another strong and capable leader to take the reins at interior, and that is miss sally jewell. in high school, sally's aptitude test showed she had a knack for mechanical reasoning and spatial ability. we checked. we do thorough vetting before nominations. of course, her recommended professions after she took these tests were to be a nurse or a teacher. like all the other girls in her class. and it wasn't until she was an undergraduate at the university of washington, studying to be a dentist, when sally realized her boyfriend's homework was more interesting than hers and she decided to become an engineer.
and after graduation sally went on to work in the oil fields of oklahoma and colorado, later she brought her experience in the energy sector to banking, where she spent 19 years determining what makes companies succeed and fail. and most recently as the ceo of rei, a position that she's held for the last eight years, sally has helped turn a stalling outdoor retail near one of america's most successful and environmentally conscious companies. last year rei donated almost $4 million to protect trails and parks and 20% of the electricity used in their stores comes from renewable sources. so even as sally spent the majority of her career outside of washington, where i might add the majority of our interior is located, she is an expert on the energy and climate issues that are going to shape our future. she's committed to building our nation to nation relationship
with indian country, she knows the link between conservation and good jobs. she knows there is no contradiction between being good stewards of the land, and our economic progress that, in fact, those two things need to go hand and hand. she has shown that a company with more than $1 billion in sales can do the right thing for our planet. sally's broad expertise and set of values i know will serve her well as she takes on these new challenges. she's got a wonderful and supportive family who i understand enjoy the great outdoors like she does. so they have got a vested interest in making sure that the department of interior is doing the right thing and when sally is confirmed, i'm willing to bet she'll be the first secretary of the interior who frequently hikes mailbox peak in her native washington state and who once spent a month climbing mountains in antarctica which is not something i think of doing because it seems like it would
be cold. and i was born in hawaii. so for sally, the toughest part of the job will probably be sitting behind a desk, i suspect she'll want to get out of the office quite a bit. but, again, i want to thank ken salazar and the entire salazar family for their service, their friendship. the interior department is stronger. this country is stronger. our natural resources are in a better place because of his extraordinary service. i could not be more thrilled with the work that sally, i know, is going to do in following that path that ken has carved. i expect the senate to confirm her as quickly as possible. and with that, i would like to invite both of them to say a few words starting with my dear friend ken salazar.
>> thank you, mr. president. the same one i have? no, that's sally's. just didn't want to get them mixed up. >> let me just first of all say to president obama that i am humbled and honored beyond imagination to have been a part of the president obama dream team for the united states of america. his presidency is historic. his team in the white house is historic. and the team at the department of interior are historic. and for that i will ever be eternally grateful to you, my wonderful friend, mr. president. >> thank you.
>> so, with your leadership and support, and this wonderful team that we have here, we have, in fact, changed wait that the department of interior does business. we have seized the opportunity together with our other colleagues on the cabinet, and under the president's leadership and your stellar staff here at the white house, to put the nation on a path towards energy independence. today the largest solar projects in the history of the world are coming up out of the deserts of the public lands of the united states and our foreign oil imports are at the lowest that they have been since 1995. i'm proud, mr. president, of you and your team, because of your leadership on conservation for america. from your support in the signing of the historic 2009 public lands act, to the launch of america's great outdoors, together we have ushered in a 21st century conservation agenda
and preserved the crown jewels of our nation, from the crown of the continent in montana, to the florida everglades to the statue of liberty. i'm proud of our historic work and perhaps more proud of this than almost anything else, for the nation's first americans, from resolving the long-standing conflicts like cobel, you have given credibility, mr. president, to the proposition that the nation's first americans too will share in the american dream. mr. president, my parents pushed their eight children to become first generation college graduates and taught us that anything was possible in this nation of ours. as your secretary of interior, you have given to me the opportunity to prove them right. and to achieve that american dream. and for that, hope, my wife and my entire family will be eternally grateful to you.
today, mr. president, i'm also proud to stand with you here as you announce your selection of an outstanding person to be your nominee for secretary of interior. sally jewell knows firsthand the extricable link between conservation and the economy. sally was a key contributor to you and to your entire team in the creation of the america's great outdoors agenda. she's been a champion of the land and water conservation fund and so many other conservation issues of our time. i also know that her successful business record and experience as an oil and gas engineer will serve her well as she implements your all of the above energy agenda, which has been such a keystone to you over the last four years, and i'm sure you will have more to say about that very soon. so, mr. president, i believe that as you have done with all the decisions that you have made since i have been working with you on your team, this is a
stellar decision and you've chosen somebody who will be a stellar outstanding secretary of the interior. sally jewell. >> well, thank you, mr. president, for your kind words and for the confidence you're placing in me with this nomination. i have a great job at rei today. but there is no role that compares when the call to serve my country. i'm humbled and i'm energized by this opportunity and i look forward to getting members of the senate as they consider my nomination in the coming weeks.
thank you, secretary salazar, for the opportunities you've given to people across this country, to engage with the department of interior, sharing their hopes and their dreams for our public lands, our resources, our people, especially our first people, our history and our culture. i look forward to working with the dedicated employees at interior who worked so hard to care for our land and our resources every day. i'm going to do my best to fill those big boots of yours, but i think i might get lost in your hat. thank you, warren, my husband of nearly 35 years, my two children, peter and ann, for their love and their support on this career journey. i'm excited to take this new challenge. thank you so much. >> you're going to be great. >> thank you. >> sally jewell, she says she's excited. thanking secretary salazar,
outgoing secretary salazar. she is the president's pick for the next secretary of department of interior. she has an oil energy background, which the white house hopes proves helpful in the senate confirmation hearings from washington. from seattle, originally and enjoys hiking the mountains of antarctica. coming up next, a shocking story, a federal guard accused of having sex with an inmate who, by the way, is convicted of killing police officers. by the way, she's eight months pregnant. plus, a former employee files a lawsuit against oprah winfrey's network involving sex discrimination. w!
oprah is known for her devoted female following. but now her own tv network, own, is accused of discriminating against a pregnant employee. carolyn homele, a former senior director, she filed suit claiming her duties were reassigned after she took time off for her pregnancy and then the position was eliminated. neither winfrey nor own has commented on the lawsuit. talking about looking for love in all the wrong places here. listen to this one, a federal
corrections officer is being charged for having sex with a convicted cop killer. according to a source close to this investigation. and the accused, nancy gonzalez, is apparently carrying some serious evidence against her, aka here, her -- she's 8 months pregnant allegedly with the inmate's baby. cnn's susan candiotti live in new york on the story. susan, talk about an odd coupling. >> yes, brooke, it is a strange couple. no matter how you look at it. a former new york federal prison guard is now eight months pregnant by an inmate she was guarding. prosecutors say nancy gonzalez is charged with sexually abusing an inmate. she allegedly had sex with him at least three times in a room near his cell. the father of her baby, according to a law enforcement official, renell wilson, a convicted cop kill, behind bars for killing two new york police officers in 2003, shooting them in the back of the head in a car during a gun buy.
prosecutores say they have miss gonzalez on video in a room with the defendant, and in phone calls admitting to the tryst. in court papers she's quoted allegedly telling another inmate, i took a chance because i was so vulnerable and wanted to be loved and now i am carrying his child. and that she, quote, kind of got sucked into his world and felt like, well, why not give him a child as far as giving him some kind of hope. now, wilson was on death row, but his sentence was overturned because of a statement made by prosecutors to the jury. the government is arguing to retry the penalty phase. now, for miss gonzalez, eight months pregnant, she could face up to 15 years in prison if found guilty. her lawyer is defending her. >> people fall in love in the strangest places. and people get together in the most difficult circumstances. we live in a society where these events happen. these types of cases are unusual, but they're not uncommon.
>> okay, so, susan, this guy apparently, if he was sentenced, why does he want to father a baby here? >> well, that is the question, isn't it? it is possible that maybe wilson thought about wanting to -- wanting to leave a legacy behind. but he left a note to someone. he wrote, actually, a letter to another inmate. he said, quote, i just need a baby before these pigs try to take my life. i need to have something behind. now, currently he's serving a life sentence. miss gonzalez is out on bond. and court papers, get this, suggest that she was also involved with yet another inmate. brooke? >> okay. i'm just going to leave it there. susan candiotti, thank you. and now -- ♪ turn on your television. at any given moment what you see is profoundly different from shows of years past. gone are the happy days, the
brady bunch, laverne and shirley. here now we have the housewives, honey boo boo. so is that what we have become in america? are we airing who we truly are? take a look. ♪ sunday, monday happy days ♪ >> reporter: happy days, i love lucy, leave it to beaver, classic images of american life that became synonymous with a country. ♪ heaven i'm in heaven ♪ >> reporter: but fast-forward 40 or 50 years and what we're watching now paints a very different picture. >> guess what? >> mama. >> mommy's going to have another baby. >> reporter: from swiss family robinson to the hunger games. and the real housewives are now more this than this. >> beaver, you made the football team. do you think you're going to get a letter? >> reporter: and don't assume you'll find a more reserved america at the bookstore. last year's best-seller,
so-called mommy porn, "50 shades of grey." name a book, tv show or movie you think most epitomizes america right now. >> "sex and the city". >> honey boo boo. >> hunger games. >> here comes honey boo boo. >> i can't wait to go to the pageant with glitzy because we're going to win it all. >> reporter: did america take a wrong turn after happy days? ♪ where are those good old-fashioned values ♪ >> the golden age of television sitcoms did not reflect the way american society really was. what it reflected to some extent is the way america thought it should be. >> reporter: so what is the reality of america today? >> "homeland". >> "zero dark thirty". >> it would be "homeland". >> an american prison of war had been turned. >> what show time reflects is this latent paranoia that most of us feel, having lived through
september 11th. >> reporter: we also got the message that america still equals family. >> modern family. >> modern family. >> parenthood. >> modern family. >> modern family. >> modern family. >> reporter: it may just look a little different these days. ♪ the circle of life >> we adopted a baby. >> what happened really is television has caught up to human reality. >> reporter: perhaps so, but some of us believe the real america is still to be found in a house in 1950s milwaukee. >> "happy days," it was a fun time, there was a sense of community. there was an innocence about "happy days, " you know. i'm lorenzo.
i work for 47 different companies. well, technically i work for one. that company, the united states postal service®, works for thousands of home businesses. because at usps.com®, you can pay, print and have your packages picked up for free. i can even drop off free boxes. i wear a lot of hats. well, technically i wear one. the u.s. postal service®, no business too small.
bottom of the hour, i'm brooke baldwin. for the next 30 minutes we're getting all sides from the story you will be talking about at the dinner table tonight. want to start here with the u.s. postal service saying it will shut down saturday mail service. that starts in august. but americans s s are simply no sending as much mail. the result, the postal service posted a record loss, $15.9 billion last year. the post master general saying today, quote, you can't beat free. let's bring in our panelists to talk all things postal service, jawn murray back today, lauren ashburn back as well, editor in chief of daily download. amy palmer, entertainment reporter and founder of power women tv. and last but not least, chris frates for national journal. let me ask you this, no
saturdays, big surprise, do you care? >> it is interesting, brooke. a lost folks here in washington are thinking, maybe this is the postal service move to take away a delivery day to try to get some sympathy and do the most extreme thing first. we'll cancel service, maybe we'll get more congressional funding, but i'm not really sure anybody cares. if you don't get mail on saturday, what, you're going to have to mail somebody's birthday card a couple of days earlier? >> amy, do you care? do you feel the sympathy for the usps? >> the deal is this, anyone who is running a business knows it comes down simple economics. the post office is losing billions of dollars a year. let's not forget this is a business, people. why are we using taxpayer money to fund a business that isn't working? you have to bring it down to the basic economics. so, yes, mail that birthday card out on monday. your mom will be okay with it. >> they have lost something like
$16 billion last year. this is to help them save $2 billion. it is a drop in the bucket. let me go to you, lauren, because one question people are throwing around, should the u.s. postal service be privatizpriva? >> i can't say that we need to go fa far, but i do have to commend the post master general for doing this in a way that saves people's jobs. if you look at the way that he's doing the cuts, it is through part time hours, it is through retirement, and he's doing it in a way that is helpful to people as opposed to just saying -- >> the unions don't like it. >> they don't, but they don't like it, but it is better than getting fired, don't you think? >> john, do you think they should take it a step further? if they have been hemorrhaging all this money, would you care if they every other day during the week slash service? >> i would care about losing my saturday service, brooke. i don't know about you, but i feel like my checks always show up on saturdays. don't get me wrong, i'm excited about them making a decision and saving jobs, and i know lauren
is going to hate this, but they probably could save a few jobs if they get lance armstrong to return the $30 million they invested in him in sponsor money. >> would you stop with his name. i do not want to hear lance armstrong's name again. >> never talking lance armstrong with lauren ever, ever again. i will talk chris brown. can we talk about this to the four of you. remember the community service he was supposed to be serving, that 18 0 days because he got and pleaded guilty to beating his girlfriend rihanna, four years ago. could he be in more trouble because the district attorney in los angeles says, um, yeah, he didn't do that community service? that's next. [ justin ] mulligan sir. mulligan. take a mulligan. i took something for my sinuses, but i still have this cough. [ male announcer ] truth is, a lot of sinus products don't treat cough. they don't? [ male announcer ] nope, but alka seltzer plus severe sinus does it treats your worst sinus symptoms, plus that annoying cough. [ angry gibberish ] [ fake coughs ] sorry that was my fault sir. [ male announcer ] alka seltzer plus severe sinus. [ breathes deeply ] ♪ oh, what a relief it is! [ male announcer ] try alka seltzer plus severe sinus day and night
back with the panel. due back in court today, chris brown, not for something he did, for something say he didn't do. the pop singer is facing accusations that he lied about finishing the community service assigned to him after he assaulted his then and current girlfriend rihanna. let me open up the panel and, jawn, since this is your wheel house and we have talked about the chair throwing, talked about the alleged frank ocean punching, the stolen cell phone, now we have the fact there are allegations he didn't do these 180 days. who do you believe? his attorney said he did. >> this is a hard one for me. i've given on this very show, given chris the benefit of the doubt. i've been a vocal supporter he deserved a second chance because
he committed the crimes, the initial one as a teenager. i thought he faced his charges like a man. if the allegations are true, this isn't a good sign. you've got to serve your time, you've got to do what the court, you know what you agreed to do in the court and you've got to complete the fulfillment of it. that's what you have to do. if it turns out this is true, this isn't going to bear well for him at all. >> what do you think, amy? >> the general rules don't apply to chris brown. this is somebody who assaulted the biggest pop star in the world, continued to sell millions of albums. he's 12 million twitter followers. he thinks he's above the law. i'm not surprised by this. i don't know why his fans would be at this point. he's arrogant. he thinks he doesn't have to follow the rules. and, frankly, i think it is time that he does pay the price for what he's done. >> here is the kicker. this motion, i have this motion here, i've been looking at it, a motion doesn't say, hey, chris brown, you need to revoke his probation or ask him to go to jail, it says, you need to redo
these 180 days. and let me just add this little bit of color. this is page 14. richmond police department this was supposed to be done in virginia, reported that the defendant was picking up trash for four hours on this particular day. goes on, the information obtained from this private airline shows a defendant was en route from richmond to cancun, mexico, on that very day. chris, you talk budget. i'll make you talk chris brown. what do you think if he's heading to mexico? >> i just wonder, the above the law here, because it is so interesting to me that they don't want him to go to jail. he also gets probation. so he is kind of right that if he's feeling above the law, they're not revoking his probation, not sending him to jail, would you just finish it. it hurts his brand. folks are going to get a little bit fed up with this, this idea that he can just do whatever he wants, it is not very appealing and i just wonder is it good business. >> what brand is what i want to know.
>> is it a double standard for folks in hollywood that they seem to -- if the alleges are true, he gets off easier. too soon? what lessons, amy points out, 12 million twitter followers. big picture, young people, they look up to chris brown. lauren, you get the final word on this. what message is this sending to the youth in our country if you aren't exactly doing your community service, you're not in a bunch of trouble. >> it says we have lousy, lousy role models in this country from, jawn, lance armstrong, to all of the other very famous people, tiger woods, all of these people who have the trust of the american people and especially the youth of this country, and they're blowing it. >> moving on from chris brown. we have to talk about this second-grader. this second-grader suspended from school for playing make believe, for throwing this imaginary grenade.
bringing back the panel. every kid pretends to be a superhero, right? i remember spinning around the playground trying to be wonderwoman, trying to beat the bad guys and save the world. that what got alex evans suspended from school. in fact, here is how alex tells it. >> i pretended with my hand i pretended a box and something shaking in it. i'm, like, and it goes -- so nothing can get out of it and destroy the world. i just can can't believe i got dispended. >> dispended, he says. this second-grader who was dispended said he was suspended for throwing an imaginary grenade. the school district tells us there is more to it, it never actually suspended a student for
an imaginary weapon, but it does raise the question about zero tolerance policies and are we too on edge after what happened in newtown. lauren, first to you, certainly not the first time zero tolerance policy has gone too far but what do you think? an imaginary grenade? >> give me a break. this is ridiculous. this is the nation running amok. these kids are playing. play is not violent and aggressive. it is play. there is a very famous author named michael thompson and he wrote raising caine and i happened to hear him speak. he said, boys all around the world, in all of society, play rough. and there has to be some tolerance for that. as long as they're not going after people aggressively, other children violently, then we have to cut them some slack. it is who they are. >> where do we draw the line? because of what happened in newtown, i think it is now 54 days since, right, we have been talking so much about fear of violence, et cetera, in schools. chris, where do we draw the
line? are we too on edge? >> this feels too far. if you want to, you know, give the kid a time-out, we used to put you on the wall, take away recess, that's one thing. to take a kid out of school, we had it happen in washington a few days ago, brought a toy gun to school and was suspended. that seems a bridge too far. boys, i used to play. we used to have play guns. >> you got in trouble, chris? >> i didn't get in trouble, because i didn't bring it to school, but even my friends who don't allow guns in their homes play guns with their kids, the boys make it out of toast. i mean, it is just going to happen. >> there was a story in georgia a couple of years ago where a sixth grader came to school, had this long key chain attached to this tweety bird wallet and she was suspended from this school and apparently the parents couldn't appeal initially because they were saying the chain was too long. there are obviously multiple examples of this. we looked at the -- a website
that once existed and there were absolutes at this elementary school and no weapons, real or play, no illegal drugs or alcohol. i don't know if any of you -- how many parents do we have on the panel? anyone? silence. that's a no. >> no, i said yes. i'm raising my hand. >> i didn't see you. lauren, if you had a child and this happened to your child, what would you do? >> i have three children, 12, 9 and 5. and let me tell you, things like this have happened to me. and not in the school, but my son did have a toy gun at one point, and my daughter packed up to go on a flight with all of us, and i wasn't watching what she packed and the 4-year-old threw a toy gun and we put it through the metal detector at the airport. >> what happened? >> you can just imagine how crazy everybody went. here it was just a 4-year-old. >> can you understand if we're being so uber -- >> i got it. i get it there. but without an actual physical
object, i have such a hard time. these are second-graders. what happened to talking to kids? they're good listeners. can't you say to them, look, this is the appropriate thing, we don't allow this in this school, you can do this at home, but i do have to add one other thing. we're not hearing the school's point of view on this, are we? they can't talk about it. >> they can't talk about it. it is an individual case, an individual child and can't go there, so we only extrapolate from what we get from the child and the parent. john, you get the last word. >> this was a teaching lesson. it was an invisible situation here. what are they going to do next? start institutionalizing kids for having invisible friends. that would happen to all of us. i was in love with the girl from the holograms. >> final topic for you all, after this break, that is how can you go wrong with steven
heart. this upcoming weekend he's going to train 40 volunteers with a simulated school shooting. we got a release from sheriff arpaio, says teenagers have volunteered to play students. so who is teaching the class here? here is a hint. >> a team of terrorists have taken over. >> wake up the president. >> but there is just one thing they didn't count on. the cook. >> let go of me! >> are you like some special forces guy or something? >> no, just a cook. >> oh, my god, we're going to die. >> yep, movie tough guy and posse volunteer steven seagal is one of the instructors here in maricopa county. and, news crew will be allowed to catch the whole thing on camera. that said, chris, is this, you know, just another one of arpaio's grabs for attention? or is there validity here?
>> it feels very pr to me, this idea that we're going to bring a hollywood box office star in on a school shooting, kind of conflats the two issues of violence and movies and reality and kind of blurs the lines here, which, you know, in washington, they're debating kind of how much influence movies and violent images have over these kinds of events. and now sheriff is blending these two things. you got to wonder what he's thinking here. >> it is interesting you bring up what is happening in washington. we saw celebrities coming out today, asking congress to do something, to act. i'm curious, i'll throw this to you. do you think celebrities in general should have a role in the whole gun debate that the nation is having? >> these are the people that we look at in movies, on television. these are the people that our children are emulating. steven seagal is a branding genius. this is a man who started a reality show called lawman. he's playing one on tv and he's -- >> he's been depp tiesed.
>> he's been involved with law enforcement for 20 years. it is not like he's just showing up for this big pr stunt, which i do think it is. but he is actively involved in this. so should celebrities be involved in this sort of dialogue? absolutely. because they are our role models. but i think this is also part of a pr and branding effort on his part. >> lauren, do you think celeb triz ro are role models? >> i think it is the wrong question. what happens after steven seagal, the movie star has come and all the people have been trained and it is really great. and then you have the -- his posse going around to all the schools guarding the schools. and then who do the kids trust? how do they know this crazy guy with the gun here, is he the real crazy guy? is this guy who doesn't look like a deputy a gun guy? it is the whole process, to me, is crazy, that you have this posse going around.
and then to put a role model on top of it, nuts. >> it is interesting you bring up the process. we were covering a story last week in illinois, a school firing blanks as sort of a sim late school shooting, similar to what they're doing a little bit different, but similar to the idea they'll be doing this weekend in maricopa county, brings me to the question, what do you make of these simulated school shootings in this climate right now? the priority is getting these kids prepared if and when the most horrific of horrifics happen, but do you think this works? >> my son, talking a lot about my kids today, they'll be psyched my son had a code red lockdown at his school just the other day. they all had to stand around their lockers, this is in, you know, bethesda, maryland, they stood around their lockers and these poor seventh graders had to be quiet for 15 minutes while the teachers locked the doors and all the lights are out. i'm glad they're doing those kinds of exercises to prepare. i just have a hard time with the other part of it, which is the
outside, where you're getting all of these people you don't know, carrying guns, around the school, and the kids don't know who's good and who's bad. >> can you understand where, jawn, can you understand where the school is coming from? their priority is to protect their young girls and boys and so whatever links they perhaps are going to, they're doing it in some cases to make sure if and when it happens, they know what they're doing. >> brooke, i get that aspect of it. this is the new fire drill. this is what we have to do to prepare our kids. i don't like the hollywood aspect of it. what is next? are we going to have the cast of greys anatomy training medical staff across the country or talking about chris brown, kerry washington plays olivia, public relations guru on scandal, is she going to show up and fix his life? hollywood stars need to stay out of real life issues when it does not want their participation. >> amy, you get the final word and then we're done. >> well, the issue is is that hollywood has a tremendous influence on us in social media,
our children, the way we think. it is blended. the minute that we acknowledge that is the minute we can all work together to fix these issues. >> lauren ashburn, jawn murray, chris palmer, chris frates, thank you. up next, this is the talk, the boy scouts of america, they have now delayed their decision to decide on whether to ban gay scouts, gay leaders, but why? stay right there. [ male announcer ] susan writes children's books.
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hour until the closing bell. quick peek. dow down 17 points, just below e the 14,000 mark. hopefully soon we'll hit that record high when it closed in october of '07, that 14,164. we're watching. you can watch, go to cnnmoney.com. i'm brooke baldwin live in the cnn world headquarters. beginning with the hottest stories in a flash, rapid fire. roll it. first up here, allegations involving new jersey senator bob menendez have prompted action from the dominican legal system. cnn has learned the district attorney from santo domingo opened this probe aimed at
finding one peter williams, this person, peter williams apparently is the source of e-mails sent to an ethics group in washington alleging hookups involving menendez and prostitutes in the dominican republic, including at least one prostitute under the age of 18. menendez denies those allegations. and mexican police say they could make arrests as early as this week and that brutal gang rape, gang rape in acapulco. group of spanish tourists staying at this baeach side bungalow were attacked by masked men with guns. broke into their villa in the middle of the night. police say they haven't made any arrests yet, but they are monitoring the suspects. he is the first iranian president to visit egypt in three decades. but wasn't exactly a warm welcome in cairo for mahmoud ahmadinejad. watch for yourself.
you see here some of the shoes flying. we spotlighted it for you. several men threw shoes at him as he was leaving this mosque. this is a major insult in the muslim world. you remember george w. bush suffered -- there it went. and he ducked. similar indignity while visiting iraq. that was back in 2008. analysts keep talking about the housing industry coming back. here is more proof. great news home depot, just announced it is going to hire 80,000 people for its busiest spring season here. this is 10,000 more jobs than it posted last year at this time. if you want to apply, you can, apply online. there is a new job app tool for military veterans. germany's top educator has allegedly been caught cheating. a university has stripped education minister anetta shahvon of her degree after a blogger said she copied sections of her dissertation.
the topic of her work here, how we form our conscience. the minister denies wrongdoing, says she will sue the university for taking away her degree. an arizona couple vacationing in hawaii hanging out, relaxing, canoe ride, when this happens. >> oh, my god! >> we'll keep looping it. i want you to see this again. a huge, wait for it. humpback whale, hitting the bow of this canoe, as it surfaces for a breath of air. good thing they had a camera and they're okay. now look at this. this is a bread truck dangling precariously from above. this is an overpass on an interstate in ft. lauderdale, florida. a truck crashed over the guardrail, wedged against this large concrete column, thank goodness the column was there. folks rushed in to rescue the driver with a ladder. but they weren't able to immediately get to the passenger who did not survive.
♪ ♪ britney spears is close to signing a long-term deal to headline at a major las vegas casino. spears' manager tells "extra" he would be shocked, his word, if a deal doesn't happen. by the way, spears hinted at a vegas gig on monday. i didn't know her dog had a twitter account. learned something new, tweeting this. mommy, are dogs allowed to gamble in vegas? okay. the post office announces a big change. the boy scouts big announcement is a dud. and the discovery of earth-like planets. time to play reporter roulette. we begin with the post office. you would not be getting mail starting in august on saturdays. athena jones tracking the story for us now in washington. athena?
>> let me ask you one question. >> the postal service announced they plan to stop delivering first class mail on saturdays, packaged delivery will continue. this is part of cost cutting efforts for the postal service. they have been hemorrhaging money in recent years as more people use the internet to keep in touch with family and friends and loss to pay their bills. so this is one of several cost cutting measures. the american postal workers union is not happy about this. they believe that stopping saturday mail delivery of letters will further weaken the system and perhaps drive more consumers away. they want to see congress act to change a 2006 law they say has hampered the postal service. that law requires them to prepay health care benefits for future retirees to the tune of several billion dollars a year. they're hoping to put pressure on congress by making this announcement today. >> athena jones, thank you. next, the boy scouts delay their big decision. dan simon live at salt lake
city. dan, why the delay? >> reporter: here in salt lake city, they're pleased the ban remains in place, but they see this as a short-term victory. it is important to note that here where the mormon church is headquartered, that they view this through the eyes of the mormon church, they view same sex relationships as sinful. i've been talking to parents and scout leaders alike to ask them what they would do if the ban was lifted. take a look. >> it is hard to predict what would happen. i know what i would do. i would stop volunteering in the boy scouts and i think my son would leave scouting. and i would try to find another organization that teaches high moral principle. >> reporter: about 70,000 boy scouts here in the salt lake city area. the fear is that this ban is lifted, you would see a mass exodus of people leaving the boy scouts at their parents urging. brooke? >> dan simon, thank you. next, scientists made this absolutely incredible discovery here, billions of earth-like
alien planets could be residing in the milky way. and the nearest one could be just a stone's throw away at least. stone's throw in space miles. chad myers as we talk proximity here, what do we mean by earth-like planets? >> you have a good arm if that's a stone's throw away. we're talking about now the scientist from harvard smithsonian looking at planets around red dwarves. we haven't looked at these. we're looking for planets and how this happens. here is the red dwarf sun. a planet gets in the way and blocks out a little bit of that light. when that planet goes across the sun, as a transit, we see the dimness, the -- well, the, you know, the telescope does, we don't. the numbers go down, the brightness goes down and they know there are planets there. the closest one now, 13 light-years away. only 13. and it is a goldie locks planet. you know what that means? not too hot, not too cold, just right.
just far enough away from the sun that we could actually have liquid water. >> so here is something that is not just right, if you don't exactly like blizzards. something is rolling through the northeast. i hear you're grumbling. >> yes, it is. >> tell me what is going on. >> there is a major event possible for the northeast coming up on friday. i'm still talking, you know, a couple of days away. it is going to take some time to figure out whether this is new york city, certainly i think boston gets in, portland, on up to atlanta, canada. the storm, two of them, the storm begins to come in from the south and the cold air comes in from the west. when that happens, you get a snow event. boston, some computers are at 25 inches for you. new york, new york, anywhere from half inch to almost 12 inches on some of the computers. i don't put out a 1 to 12 inch forecast. you have to wait before i will actually give you a number, because i don't believe one or the other. maybe somewhere in between, but we'll know tomorrow how much warm air comes into the storm. it will be more rain. how much cold air comes in, it
will be more snow. it is all about the timing. >> all right, get your snowplows ready. chad myers, thank you. a second-grader suspended for throwing an imaginary grenade. in a nation on edge, good move or over the top? i'm brooke baldwin. the news is now. so at this point, who hasn't testified about guns? >> when your dad says something you listen. >> celebs in the hot seat. plus, chilling new details about the bunker built for war. and marco rubio, u.s. senator, and hip-hop historian? wait until you hear what he has to say about tupac and biggie.
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washington and their message is this, act now, do something to reduce gun violence. here is tony bennett. >> i still haven't gotten over connecticut. i'd like the assault weapons to go to war, not in our own country. and i'd like assault weapons eliminated. >> joe johns joins me now. joe is our crime and justice correspondent. and, joe, what does this say about the current, really the current state of the gun debate here post newtown, that celebrities are starting to jump on board? >> well, brooke, you know, if we're completely honest, this has happened before. an all-star cast, but not for hollywood movie. a lot of people this time, though. chris rock, tony bennett, anna de vrie smith, amanda peet at the u.s. capital at a news conference. this is mayor bloomberg's group known as mayors against illegal guns. and while the overall tone, of
course, was serious, chris rock sort of loosened up the mood when he took the mike. listen. >> i am just here to support the president of the united states. president of the united states is, you know, our boss. he's also, you know, the president and the first lady are kind of like the mom and the dad of the country. and when your dad says something, you listen. and when you don't, it usually bites you in the ass later on. so i'm here to support the president. thank you. >> now, chris rock actually has made guns and bullets before part of one of his stand-up routines, made a big joke and got a lot of laughs saying that if they charged $5,000 for a bullet, there wouldn't be any bystanders, any innocent bystanders anymore. he didn't use that joke today, brooke. >> no joking. we mentioned they're calling
themselves demand a plan. we have seen the ads, seen a lot of michael bloomberg. you look at the ads, they look pretty expensive looking. do we know -- do we know how much money is involved and where the money might be spent? >> michael bloomberg is loaded, of course, and he's put a lot of his own money into this endeavor. he's also started this group mayors against illegal guns. i asked the director of that group, mark glaze, about the kind of money going in and he says they're actually getting big donations. listen. >> we have had significant increase of funds coming in through the website. we don't necessarily ask for them. the average contribution size is about $70. but it is really exploded. and on the other end of the spectrum, we had people give us $100,000 who we never met before because they care about this issue. we're spending it on everything we normally do, but we're doing a lot more of it because this is the moment to make a difference. >> of course, the spending by gun control advocates has really
dwarved by the spending of the gun lobby and the national rifle association. >> joe johns, thank you, in washington for me. when you think about drones, you usually think of these drones, flying top secret missions overseas. well, now one town, the first city in the country, passing this anti-drone resolution. this is charlottesville, virginia. the proposal is a no drone zone. key players from both sides joining me next. [ male announcer ] when we built the cadillac ats from the ground up to be the world's best sport sedan... ♪ ...people noticed. ♪ the all-new cadillac ats -- 2013 north american car of the year. ♪ for a limited time, take advantage of this exceptional offer on the all-new cadillac ats.
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now to new jersey, where governor chris christie is telling an ex-white house doctor to, quote, shut up, when it comes to his weight. he's referring to the former white house physician connie mariano. she said she would like to see christie run for office in 2016, but she's concerned he may die in office if he doesn't check his health now. a reporter asked christie about her comments just a short time ago. >> you know, i find it fascinating that a doctor in arizona who's never met, never
examined me, never reviewed my medical history or records, knows nothing about my family history, could make a diagnosis from 2400 miles away. she must be a genius. she should probably be the surgeon general of the united states, i suspect, because she must be a genius. i think this is, listen, this is another hack who wants five minutes on tv. it is completely irresponsible, completely irresponsible. my children saw that last night. and she sat there on tv and said, i'm afraid he's going to die in office. i have four children between 9 and 19. my children, my 12-year-old son comes to me last night and says, dad, are you going to die? come on. this is irresponsible stuff. and people who have a medical license, who have the privilege of having a medical license, should, in my view, conduct themselves more responsibly than that. if she wants to come on a plane and come here to new jersey and asks me if she wants to examine me and review my medical history, i'll have a
conversation with her about that. until that time, she should shut up. >> this is the third time this week governor christie has discussed his weight. he says he cares about his health and is making the best effort he can. quick programming note for you, dick morris' prediction of a mitt romney landslide on election night didn't happen. tonight he goes head to head with piers morgan to talk about where the republican party goes from here, tonight 9:00 p.m. eastern. defense secretary leon panetta is recommending to congress a smaller increase in pay for military troops. just 1%. the initial plan was to give servicemen and women a 1.7% raise. the reduction of future pay comes as the pentagon is trying to deal with looming automatic spending cuts. >> this is not a game. this is reality. these steps would seriously
damage a fragile american economy, and they would degrade our ability to respond to crisis, precisely at a time of rising instability across the globe. >> panetta also warned that 800,000 civilian workers could be furloughed for 22 days. drones, they aren't just for tracking and attacking terrorists in, say, afghanistan, anymore. more cities and states are using the unmanned aircraft to snoop on criminals. and there are fears among some that the drones will become as pervasive as surveillance cameras watching and recording each and every move we make. now, charlottesville, virginia, has become the very first city in the country to pass an anti-drone resolution. this is the headline here. but there is so much more to this story. let me bring in my guest. we have kristen sackish, the vice mayor of charlottesville. and john whitehead, the president of the rutherford
institute, civil liberties. welcome to both of you. john, let me begin with you. this started with your civil liberties group. you go to this city council with a proposal. what was in it? >> basically to provide civil liberties protection against drones. by 2015, the president of the united states signed a law into effect, they'll be flying over every city in the country. the drones will be equipped with scanning devices, tasers, rubber bullets, all the things, sound cannons they're using overseas. the question is, how should we limit them? the proposal we floated to the city council and all 50 states in congress and we have people in congress looking at this, we have some civil liberties protections. we cannot prohibit drones. there will be beneficial use for drones, of course. the question is is if they can see through the walls of your home, should they be used against citizens in court? we're saying no. should they be equipped with rubber bullets, grenade launchers, sound cannons and
tasers? we're saying no. i go back and say it again, beneficially, yeah, it is a $30 billion a year industry, they're going to be everywhere and some of the use of drones is going to be very beneficial. >> i hear you and i think, kristen, you agree that there are benefits of drones, can you tell me, bottom line, in terms of what passed, this week, on city council, is this necessarily a no zone -- no drone zone or is it that just basically in courts, you know, in courts you can't use the information that someone could get from a drone over charlottesville. >> yes, the resolution actually says that it can't be used in court and also that the -- the city would not use anything for weapons, weaponized drones. >> what benefits do you think drones could have? >> well, i don't know. i can imagine situations in which -- i've heard possibilities of situations in which you might be able to find survivors in a burning building without having to send in a firefighter. things like that i think are, you know, things we all hope for from this sort of technology.
>> and, john, do you wish this went further? how much further? >> i don't think you can go much further. what i think is good about this, this is a local community. i always encourage people to act locally, think nationally. the president of the united states signed the law into effect allowing drones to fly over the country by 2015, 30,000 will be flying over the country by 2020. i'm being told by people in the aerospace industry. we need protections. he signed the law that gave us no protect and that's all we're asking here. drones will be able to find lost children, probably. you have to understand the technology. there are drones as small as hummingbirds. people can go on youtube and watch them. they'll be everywhere. >> law enforcement, hollywood, all kinds of entities. >> everybody will be using them. i had a student studying with me this summer that had two drones in his car. showed me how to operate them. >> just on the cover of "time" magazine. chris, the final word here. here you are, charlottesville, virginia, my old stomping grounds, beautiful, small town,
just two hours away from d.c. you're the first city with this anti-drone resolution. do you think that you all will sort of be the beginning, the domino effect of other cities to come? >> i hope not. i voted against this resolution. i don't think that they pose an immediate danger in charlottesville. i think it is something we need to be keeping an eye on and mr. whitehead is right, there are -- i can imagine situations in which they could be dangerous. but don't think we're under any threat here in charlottesville now. >> john whitehead and kristen sakes, thank you. a second-grader pretends to throw a fake grenade at school. gets in real trouble. his parents, they're furious. we'll hear from them that little guy himself. plus, stop the presses, tell your neighbor, the game of monopoly is changing forever. and it has got a lot of folks talking. i had enough of feeling embarrassed about my skin.
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did you hear the outcome of the online contest to replace one of the monopoly game tokens. i know, so many of you saying are saying say it ain't so. get a shot on the 3 camera. this little thing, see this? it is so teeny tiny. it has been ironed out. horrible. horrible. this iron, it is gone. this iron is out. it is being replaced by this, a cat, which beat out a robot, a ring, a helicopter and a guitar. a guitar. that would have been my vote. monopoly fans from more than 100 countries voted in the contest on facebook. what do you think? send me a tweet. a second-grader pretending to save the world gets in real trouble with his school. here he is showing what he did. administrators suspended this guy for throwing something that didn't even exist. an imaginary grenade.
julie hayden from denver affiliate wkdvr tells his story. >> i can't believe i got dispended. >> reporter: alex doesn't understand his suspension. >> they said i was being dispended. >> reporter: -- any better than he can pronounce it. >> it is called rescue the world. >> reporter: he was playing the game during recess at loveland's mary blair high school. elementary school and threw an imaginary grenade into a box with pretend evil forces inside. >> i pretended in the box there was something shaking in it. i'm, like -- and it goes -- >> reporter: he did not throw anything real or make any threats against anyone. he explains he was pretending to be the hero. >> so nothing can get out of it and destroy the world. >> reporter: but his imaginary play broke the real rules. the school lists what it calls absolutes under the parent resources section of its website. absolutely no fighting, real or imaginary, and no weapons, real
or imaginary. >> honestly i'm not sure the rule is realistic anyway for kids this age. >> reporter: alex is like a lot of second-graders. perpetual motion. his mom says he doesn't understand why pretending to be a soldier is wrong. >> i think that when a child is trying to save the world, i don't think he should be punished for it. >> here is the response from the school district in colorado. we have this. this is their statement. quote, the situation is much more complicated than what has been portrayed. the student was not suspended for an imaginary weapon. the thompson school district has never suspended or expelled a student for an imaginary weapon. as this is a disciplinary issue regarding a student, the school district is not able to delve into the specifics of this particular incident. we're now learning much more about the s.w.a.t.-like tactics
used to rescue a now 6-year-old boy held under ground in an underground bunker for six days. remember the hostage taker here, jimmy lee dykes, was shot dead in the raid. investigators say the site may still be dangerous with explosives found inside that bunker. martin savage is in midland city, alabama. you're just getting some details. tell me about the final moments of this raid. >> reporter: yeah, let's bring you up to speed on what's been going on. bomb disposal teams have been going through the property of jimmy lee dykes and still searching because they fear there could be other explosive devices. we have been told up until recently, i'm talking a few hours, the body of the gunman is still inside of that bunker because authorities felt it was too dangerous to go in there and remove him. two explosive devices were found. one inside the bunker, another outside of the bunker. now, down to those final moments. one of the things that authorities were dealing with is not just the unstable nature of explosives, but the mental state
of dykes himself. he apparently had this idea, theory, conspiracy, that somehow the mob was controlling horse racing and he was fixated on getting that message out. he kept telling authorities about it and that he wanted to talk to a member of the media. in the early hours of this whole drama, they had discussed the idea of sending in a reporter or someone pretending to be a reporter to get his statement and then in return that the little boy ethan would be set free. that idea was eventually nixed and we know that they went with the other option many days later, the forced entry with s.w.a.t. >> let me just erase my incredibly perplexed face when i hear the description. tell me about the bunker. how big was it -- is it? >> reporter: very confined space. we're talking about roughly six feet by eight feet, which, again, when you are talking about how they made this entry, the way it went down, of course, was witnesses saying there were explosions and that's been verified by authorities now. and there were flash bang
grenades that were tossed inside and that a hole was blown in the roof of the bunker and authorities had to literally drop in. but when that explosion went off, they say that dykes actually fired at them first, and it was then the federal officers that returned fire and killed him, but, of course, they had to be extremely careful because you got a little boy just feet away from where all of this is happening, ethan was unharmed. >> incredible and here it is his 6th birthday today. martin savage, thank you so much in alabama. coming up next, ali velshi with the hottest business news. ali, what's on tap? >> we're getting a lot of complaints about how high gas prices are going. i'll talk to you a little bit about gas prices. and then i'll tell you where you might be benefiting from the price of energy. that's on your money when we come back. stay with us. you're watching cnn. ke you? tdd#: 1-800-345-2550 schwab bank was built with all the value and convenience tdd#: 1-800-345-2550 investors want. tdd#: 1-800-345-2550 like no atm fees, worldwide. tdd#: 1-800-345-2550 and no nuisance fees. tdd#: 1-800-345-2550 plus deposit checks with mobile deposit. tdd#: 1-800-345-2550
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all this complaining about gas prices over the last month has been falling on deaf ears until i went for a very long drive this weekend and realized, whoo, gas prices have spiked. look at gas prices over the last month. 25 cents a gallon higher, $3.55 a gallon. and everybody is asking me, why are gas prices so high? why do you think they're so high? gas prices all have to do with this. this is light sweet crude oil, the biggest determinant in the price of gasoline so far. $96.62. this ha when it goes up a little bit, gas prices go up. there are other reasons why gas prices go up, but bottom line is that's mostly what it's about. forget about it. i can't do anything about the gas prices. what i can do is tell you how you might be saving money elsewhere in the energy world and how you might make some money. i want to show you natural gas. this is all of our energy consumption in the united states, by different sources. and you can see petroleum, which comes from that barrel of oil i
was telling you about, makes up 36% of all our energy consumption in the united states. natural gas is a quarter. coal is 20%. renewables are 9%. nuclear, not big on nuclear here in the united states, is only 8%. take a look at that 26% natural gas. in the last five years, we have been squeezing, pulling, extracting natural gas from everywhere we can find it. there is a natural gas boom in this country. natural gas production going back to 2007. it is up 19% in the course of five years. now, that's the good news, because natural gas can be used to heat your fireplace or your clothes dryer, but also a source of energy. what you're seeing is some conversion from other sources of electricity into natural gas. lots of times you plug something in, turn on a light and that energy is coming from natural gas. here's the interesting part, though, back in 2008, before the recession, natural gas was
running at $13.31 per million btus, a british thermal unit. that's how you measure natural gas. look at that. the price of this thing has plummeted. it is now $3.34 per million btus. that's up a little bit. most people think this is going to go up higher. so the bottom line is you are paying less in many cases for your electricity than you were a few years ago. where you may be paying more to fill your car up, your overall electricity bill might be less because of the price of natural gas. now, there are some opportunities for you here. one is in this natural gas boom, those companies that supply production for natural gas, they are gas fuel production, they supply the parts, the pipelines, the hoses, the valves, those companies tend to do very well. and keep in mind, because natural gas is a source for electricity, a lot of companies that are heavy users of
electricity, like steel production, like heavy industry, are benefitting from this. you might see a boom in industry and industrial jobs in the united states, because of natural gas. i am just trying to make you feel a little bit better about the fact that your gasoline prices are up 25 cents in the last month. you're not going to see much relief in gasoline prices. i am probably going to grow a full head of hair before you see cheap gas. so at least take some solace and make investments in natural gas. that's it for me from the cnn money newsroom in new york. i'm ali velshi. same time tomorrow. i'm out. to make their money do more. (ann) to help me plan my next move, i take scottrade's free, in-branch seminars... plus, their live webinars. i use daily market commentary to improve my strategy. and my local scottrade office guides my learning every step of the way. because they know i don't trade like everybody. i trade like me. i'm with scottrade. (announcer) scottrade...
the arizona woman who brutally killed her young boyfriend and then lied and denied it over and over and over, talking about this woman here, jodi arias. she is back today, on the witness stand, at her death penalty murder trial in phoenix. she's been describing the opening phase of this tragic love affair and let me tell you, no holds barred, she is talking a lot about sex. according to jodi arias, travis alexander's number one item from the start, sex. she says her own romantic interests were much more in the spiritual realm, but she says she went along with travis. here she is, jodi arias. >> i felt a little bit used, but
i knew i had gone there on my own willingly. >> what do you mean, though, you felt used? >> well, you know, he gets a hotel room, i show up, we hang out, we have sex, he's not really there presently, like, he's not mentally present, i'm getting a lot of attention, but only while we're engaging in sexual activity and then we check out and he takes off and i kind of felt like a prostitute sort of. >> so jodi arias says that in the opening days of this ill fated romance she felt, her words, like a prostitute. they're apparently laying the basis for a self-defense defense now that jodi arias concedes, that, yes, she did kill travis alexander with two gunshots and 27 slash and stab wounds. sunny hostin is our cnn legal analyst, ryan smith covering the
trial of the ins and outs as well. ryan, day three on the stand for jodi arias. how is she doing? >> she is, i think, a powerful witness. she's describing some very explicit things. she's making it seem as if travis alexander was forcing himself on her. but she is not using words that indicate anything other than a consensual relationship. >> how do you mean? >> for example, she says that at one point he baptized her, they go back to her home, and, remember this is the mormon faith, he baptizes her, takes her home and then he, for lack of a better description, bends her over the bed and forces himself on her. she doesn't say that was rape. she said she didn't want it, but went along with it because that's what travis wanted to do. jodi arias speaks in two different ways. in one way she tries to play it as if she's been forced upon and she's been abused in all of this, and the other way, she tries to say, but i don't want to throw him under the bus. it is an interesting dynamic.
what is happening so far it seems consensual but demonizing the victim so maybe the jury will say this is not a good guy. >> sunny hostin, what do you think? >> i think ryan is right on. i think he hit the nail on the head. she is a very strong witness. she appears to be docile. she's attractive. she's sweet. we see echoes of casey anthony quite frankly in the courtroom. but, remember, you know, this is a self-defense claim and this was a very vicious, vicious crime. so the tactic that the defense is using that the victim travis alexander is a bad guy oftentimes quite frankly back fires in cases like this. because even though she appears to be docile and everything was consensual, when you murder someone, and you admit to it with 27 stab wounds and a gunshot wound to the head and then lie about it and try to hide the evidence, i think it is very difficult for a jury to get beyond that, and believe that you have to do all of that to defend yourself from this bad guy, who you admittedly had this consensual relationship with.
for me, i'm sort of waiting for cross examination because it is a prosecutor's dream, quite frankly, brooke to have this kind of witness on the witness stand. and this prosecutor had a lot of time. she's been on the stand for three days. can you imagine the preparation time? >> what about, though, let's go back to everything that she sort of talked about. as you mentioned, the mormonism, the mormon faith and talk of sex as well. let's play a little bit of this. >> i felt a little bit used. but i knew i had gone there on my own willingly so -- >> what do you mean, though, you felt used? >> well, you know -- >> did he ever express a desire during this weekend to engage in anal sex with you? >> yes. >> and did he over the course of that weekend in aaronburg express a desire to have vaginal
sex with you? >> no. >> but you -- it appears, based on what you told us, you declined his desire to have anal sex, is that correct? >> yeah, he was, yeah, i did. yes, i didn't -- we did not have anal sex. >> okay. >> so obviously pretty explicit stuff on the stand, all the talk of sex and religion. what is going on? >> two tracks here. they're trying to show travis alexander the victim in this case as a sexual deviant. this is a mormon community, could be there are mormons, also people that have conservative views on that jury, and so they're trying to appeal to those people on that jury. not only that, they're trying to show he had control over her. and that's the domestic violence part of this. self-defense, she's got to prove that in that moment, she says travis, she dropped travis alexander, this is a year or so after what we're seeing now.
she drops his camera, travis alexander comes at her, she has to use deadly force, extreme deadly force on him. all of that is couched in the idea she was in this alexander and she was in a domestically violent relationship. and then they will have an expert on to say that she was a battered woman. >> cross-examination is going to be interesting. ryan smith, is sunny hostin, my thanks to both of you. make sure you check ryan on hln's "evening express" at 5:00 p.m. eastern. we're getting word from the gop about who will deliver the republican response to the state of the union address. any guesses? we'll be right back.
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this just in to us here at cnn, florida republican senator marco rubio will be delivering the republican response to the president's state of the union address next tuesday, february 12th, which will air following the state of the union. speaking of a certain florida senator, dropping the knowledge in a bar last night, even took sides on which rapper he likes the most. buzz feed captured it all. >> i think tupac's lyrics were
probably more meaningful. that was a time when rappers were like reporters, especially in that era, the '90s. people picked up on it the wrong way. they thought these were folks condoning a certain lifestyle. mostly there were reporters. from the west coast there was a lot of reporting about what it was like in south central in the l.a. area and they were reporting what life was like in that -- and that's what you found in hip-hop. >> senator rubio did not stop at tupac. here's what else you didn't know. >> i bet you don't know, there's a tupac song that mentions bob dole. >> i did not know that. >> yeah. >> shannon travis joins me from washington. t it upac, big e, spotify and play list.
>> who knew marco rubio was such a fan of gangster rap. you're right. he released his is the potify playlist. he's the first senator to did this. there's one song called clique. we wanted to play it on air but it's a little bit risque that we can't do that. another song that raised eyebrows is "pumped up kicks ". you heard it, all of the other kids with the -- >> thank you for the rendition live on the air, shannon travis. when you look at the lyrics, it's a school shooting. >> it's a very popular song but myself included didn't realize it's actually talking about a kid in a school shooting. there was a little bit of a snafu. the senator, when he released the list yesterday, had the song on his list and then somehow it was taken off by the senator's
office tells me there was no intention to intentionally take that song off. it's actually on there now. the senator is a huge fan of rap music. brooke? >> i am all for transparency, including your spotify playlist. thanks, shannon. coming up, david beckham taking it all off. we have a preview. cost investments and no hidden fees. but, you know, if you're still bent on blowing this fat stack of cash, there's a couple of ways you could do it. ♪ ♪ or just go to e-trade and save it. boom. ♪
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